Saturday 28 August 2021

You, and the choices you made

 What you have to understand, what you already do understand if you would stop lying to yourself, stop reassuring yourself that everything you did was right and just and principled, is that you made choices two years ago, and because of those choices the world has fallen into what you might call a dark spiral. Dark is not quite the word. We don’t really have words for what this is. It’s dark during wildfires, sure. It was dark on the night the Indianapolis went down and the men who delivered the bomb became food for the sharks. But it was also bright. So very bright. And red. A red we shouldn’t see on Earth. But we do see it, sometimes. And some of us live in it, all the time, while the rest of you were sunning yourself under blue skies that will soon be a memory. There were choices that you could have made. You didn’t make them. You made others. And we’re here now. Deep, deep, deep in the red. The nights the air you breathe will choke you. And you chose this.

And you will have to make new choices. And if you keep thinking as you did before, you’ll make the wrong ones again, and the skies will get more red. And sometimes, even if you don’t. Because one of the things you chose was the folks who choose for you, and you didn’t choose them that well, did you? Because you believed that everything you did was right and just and principled. Or said so, anyway. I think deep down some of you know. Some of you fooled yourself. Some of you told yourselves that you were fooling us. But your choices were shallow. Your choices were venal. Your choices were made from your own smug sense of comfort, dreams of Empire and the West, of civilising missions. Sentimental, hoping that the animals come home while the people you paid to have bombed and shot and raped by those lovely Alsatians shiver and hope that there won’t be more bombs. You had a chance and you fucked it, or let it be fucked, lay back and thought of England, all the lies she sang to you at school. I don’t know if it’s worse if you believed them or you knew that they were lies, but here we are. You chose. And you wrote your columns, saying that your choice was right and just and principled. But really, you were angry that young people called you melts. Or gammon. You were angry you heard other languages in public. You thought the voices that you couldn’t understand were mocking you. Judging you. Why? Is there something you ought to be judged for?